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Oglesby, Mahon Looking to Bring Levelheaded Approach to Local Government

The pair of Republicans are in a four-way race for two nominations in the June primary.

A year ago, amid a turbulent campaign season, Matt Mahon got a knock on his door from a fellow Republican.

Sean Kilpatrick was running for West Deptford Township Committee at the time, and the two had a conversation about the challenges Kilpatrick saw ahead for the township. Mahon hadn’t given a lot of thought to jumping into politics, but that visit from Kilpatrick raised his awareness into some of those local issues.

“I did some research on my own, and saw we’re in a tough spot,” Mahon said.

That sparked in him a desire to get more involved at the local level, which has led him to run for the Republican nomination in June’s primary, alongside Loran Oglesby, the former West Deptford and county party chair, who also ran for the Republican nomination for the House of Representatives last year.

Like the other Republicans in the field, Mahon said he and Oglesby are focused on bringing back fiscal responsibility to West Deptford, given the rising debt service payments and more than $100 million in general fund debt.

Mahon pinned some of that on RiverWinds, which accounts for close to half that debt, which he said was initially mismanaged.

“(RiverWinds) put too much of a burden on citizens before the ratables were in place,” he said.

Still, he also sees it as having a role in getting the township out of that debt. Mahon said he and Oglesby had talked with Kilpatrick about strategies for leveraging RiverWinds–whether that means putting solar panels on the community center or one of various other plans is up for discussion, he said, but the important thing is to have a plan in place.

“Township Committee is not a place for training wheels,” Mahon said.

Like Kilpatrick, Mahon said he and Oglesby are pushing for even more transparency in local government.

“We are in the information age,” he said. “We have the ability to communicate for low or no cost."

Mahon said he’d like to see the township get active in social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, in an effort to be even more communicative with residents. He pointed to Newark mayor Cory Booker’s tweets during this past winter’s paralyzing snowstorms as a prime example of how to use those social networks and online resources to better serve locals.

And though Mahon said he and Oglesby have much in common with Sam Cianfarini and Ray Chintall, the two officially endorsed Republican candidates, he said there are also significant differences, noting especially Cianfarini and Chintall’s laser focus on the township’s debt over everything else.

“Their heart’s in the right place,” Mahon said, “but cutting jobs and the budget affects everyone’s lives."

In fact, along with Cianfarini and Chintall, Mahon was the third candidate interviewed for the local party’s endorsement. He called the actual interview “a courtesy,” adding that he’d had an initially odd experience with local Republican chair Joann Priga during a meeting in January, which led him to think about branching out on his own.

While the two don’t have the endorsement from West Deptford’s Republicans, Kilpatrick, the lone Republican on Township Committee, said he’s personally endorsing the pair for the primary.

“The thing I like about them is that they’re very levelheaded,” Kilpatrick said, adding that their mindset and approach to local issues is similar to his own, in that they’re willing to hear out all sides of an issue before trying to reach a consensus solution.

Kilpatrick also praised Oglesby, who was his campaign manager in his run last year.

“She’s been a very strong player,” he said.

WDNeedsHelp April 18, 2011 at 02:56 PM
I just checked the local tax records, why doesn't Miss Oglesby pay taxes in West Deptford? I'm a little concerned that someone who doesn't pay taxes here is running for a Committee position.
Sarge62 April 18, 2011 at 03:59 PM
So you think owning land is a qualification for holding public office in West Deptford? I guess you also think that you should own land in order to vote? It wasn't that far back when people who held that belief also believed that minorities and women shouldn't vote either. Is that what you're getting at?
WDNeedsHelp April 18, 2011 at 05:06 PM
I would like to see my elected officials have the same stake in the community as I do. I never said that it should be required to become elected or vote, you did. Please do not put words in someone else's mouth, it shows ignorance to other points of view. To bring up the voting rights of women and minorities is shameful in this context. You obviously have an agenda here or you are extremely narrow minded. I simply asked a question and you make a ridiculous attack. If you were truly concerned about the Township you would simply answer the question if you had the answer. Do you?
WDNeedsHelp April 18, 2011 at 06:38 PM
BTW I checked for a J Mason on the tax rolls of WD and none showed up so what exactly is your affiliation with WD and Miss Oglesby if you don't mind me asking? http://tax1.co.monmouth.nj.us/cgi-bin/prc6.cgi?&ms_user=glou&passwd=data&srch_type=0&adv=0&out_type=0&district=0820
Sarge62 April 18, 2011 at 08:23 PM
I’m sorry if you feel attacked! That was not my intention. I was asking for clarification because it sounded as though you were raising an issue about land ownership as it relates to the ability govern. Historically speaking, people who have made that argument also applied the principle to voting. Did you know that, until 1856, there were still parts of the country where you needed to own land in order to vote? Women weren’t given the ability to vote until 1920 and minorities in 1965. Boy we’ve come a long way! I don’t have an affiliation with the above. I was reading the news this morning and wanted to comment. As far Jack Mason… That’s not my real name! Don’t you know that there are weirdos and perverts online who look at people’s tax records to see where they live?
joe west April 18, 2011 at 11:35 PM
whether they pay taxes or not who would be in there right mind to vote for these two . when was the last time loran won a political seat. Gee! I can't remember. can you? As far as mahon what experience does he have to run our township. sean daws won't be there next year whose coat tail are you going to cling to.campaighn funding for sean loran $50.00 sean $50.00 sean tell them where you got the rest
Matt Mahon April 19, 2011 at 02:32 AM
Joe, I appreciate your interest in the qualifications of people seeking office! So many people are disengaged from their community, let alone the primary elections. No matter who you vote for, be sure to vote and take a neighbor to the polls. I’d like to tell you a little about me and the life experiences that shape my outlook on the issues we face in West Deptford. I’ve lived in West Deptford for 20 of my 33 years. During the time I was away from West Deptford, I spent 5 years Captaining a patrol boat for the Coast Guard where I worked daily in support of federal law enforcement and rescue missions. I concluded my initial 4 year commitment a few days before 9/11 and voluntarily placed myself back on active duty for an additional year in the wake of the attacks. I used the GI Bill to earn a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland and worked in Government Relations at the Greater Board of Trade in Washington, DC. Naturally, I returned home to West Deptford when it was time to begin my professional career. For the last 8 years, I’ve earned positions of increased responsibility in the field of information technology and telecommunications. Continued below...
Matt Mahon April 19, 2011 at 02:32 AM
Continued... Currently, I am the Director of Professional Services for a regional technology consultancy based in Wilmington where I oversee day to day operations as well as long term strategic planning. I’m responsible for ensuring profitability, oversight of a multimillion dollar budget, staffing, and business development. Outside of work, I teach technology at the New Castle County Vocational Night School in a program I created last year for career transitioning unemployed. I’m married to my best friend and own a home in Thorofare. So in response to your question about my experience, I’m a veteran who has worked in an operational role in support of our homeland’s security. I worked extremely hard to put myself through college and built a responsible career where I’ve made tough choices to lead large organizations through tough times. I strive to give back to the community whenever possible and submit my experience and unique perspective to the voters. I welcome your questions and comments. Matt
Mary Ann April 19, 2011 at 12:01 PM
Matt, People check records and I believe you where never a captain on a patrol boat for the Coast Guard, there are ways to check records. I have checked all candidates out who are running in the primary this June. I have found out your running mate does not have a great reputation with the Republican party. While she was Chair of Gloucester County GOP, she lost many elections to the Democrats. As a matter of fact to the best of my knowledge she has never won an election. She ran for a position on the school board and lost, she ran for a freeholder and lost. so what skills does she have? As I see none. I have checked on the other 2 candidates Ray Chintall and Sam Cianfarini and they have the many years of experience in running a company and a business background. Sam has had his own business for over 20 years in computer technolgy. Ray is a retired New Jersey State Trooper and has is own consulting firm. they have lived in West Deptford for many years. They both have families and know what it means to pay taxes that have sky rocketed in West Deptford. They have been going to township meeting for over 3 years. How long have you been going to township meetings? Please tell me? West Deptford is in serious trouble with the debt we are in right now. Continued below
Mary Ann April 19, 2011 at 12:02 PM
It seems to me you do not have the experience of taking on the debt this township has right now. Sean Kilpartick is no better what expereince does he have on paying taxes. He lives at home with his mother and father. Please I realize you are married and live in West Deptford, but do you really, really know how to get this township out of the mess it is in. My question to you is the only way the voters will know if you have the knowledge is to have a debate with the other 2 candidates before the June primary. Mary Ann
Matt Mahon April 19, 2011 at 02:28 PM
Mary Ann, It’s great that you keep an open mind while conducting the research required to cast an educated ballot. All of my service records are public record and available via FOIA request. I’d be happy to sit down and share with you my photos, records and history or the method to procure such things directly from the government. Be warned, I may make you hear some stories about the ‘good ole days’ too. ;) In the meantime, here’s a Gloucester County Times article that Jim Six wrote about my service just after 9/11: http://public.mattmahon.com/Newspaper.jpg Good luck in your research and keep asking questions! Matt
concerned April 19, 2011 at 04:22 PM
MATT IF YOU ARE BASING YOUR CREDENTIALS ON BEING ELECTED MAYBE I SHOULD RUN. I SERVED AS A SUPPLY OFFICER ON BOARD THE USS NEW JERSEY 1967-1970 DURING THE VIET NAM CONFLICT I HAVE MY OWN BUSINESS WHICH HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL FOR THE PAST 22 YEARS I GRADUATED FROM THE NAVAL ACADEMY IN 1964 I RECIEVED THE PURPLE HEART AND OTHER NUMEROUS MEDALS I'M WELL KNOWN IN THE GLOUCESTER AND CAMDEN COUNTIES . I CONTRIBUTE TO VARIOUS ORGINAZATIONS AND CHARITIES I HAVE A WONDERFUL FAMILY 5 CHILDREN ALL GRADUATES OF UNIVERSITIES AND COLLEGES I CAN GO ON AND ON MAYBE I SHOULD RUN IT SEEMS MY QUALIFICATIONS TO PUT WEST DEPTFORD FURTHER IN DEBT IS JUST AS GOOD AS YOURS BY THE WAY IF YOU LOSE WANTS YOUR NEXT MOVE IT MIGHT BE CHECKMATE
WDNeedsHelp April 20, 2011 at 02:49 PM
Miss Oglesby seems to have a sorted past as well in politics. Along with not being a taxpayer in WD she also seems to leave a wake of destruction in her path. Read the links below: http://www.politickernj.com/save-glouco/27440/more-elected-officials-call-oglesby-resign http://www.examiner.com/camden-county-conservative-in-philadelphia/vote-glading-over-oglesby-1st-congressional-district-gop-primary-on-june-8th http://vip.politickernj.com/matt-friedman/31190/fey-seeks-rebuild-gloucester-gop http://vip.politickernj.com/matt-friedman/30504/oglesby-not-ready-make-nice http://vip.politickernj.com/matt-friedman/27300/ex-freeholder-candidate-seeks-ouster-gloucester-gop-chair http://articles.philly.com/2009-06-08/news/25286457_1_state-and-national-party-republican-party-chairman-faction/2 http://www.examiner.com/camden-county-conservative-in-philadelphia/lessons-from-new-jersey-s-gop-primary?render=print http://www.politickernj.com/save-glouco/27828/gloucester-county-gop-chairwoman-loran-oglesbys-free-political-junket-may-explain- Miss Oblesby destroyed the Republican party in Gloucester County and now that compentent people have taken it away from her and starting rebuilding she has decided to be childish and petty and form her own splinter party. My advice to everyone, run as fast as you can away from this woman and her partner.

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